Christian, worry more about what is in your heart than what you put into it

And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”(Mark 7:20-23) This verse in context reminds me of a passage from Paul which makes a similar point: If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were s … [Read more...]

To truly succeed with the crowd we must learn to also withdraw to the quiet place 

“And after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray.”‭‭(Mark‬ ‭6:46‬) Yesterday we spoke about Jesus' love for the crowds. But Jesus also often withdrew from the crowds. Some of us, myself definitely included, often forget the vital place of such withdrawal from the business of life, not always just to enjoy recreation, but to reconnect with the source of all power through prayer.  Lord, teach me to pray!  … [Read more...]

How do you feel about crowds? Jesus loved them.

“When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And he began to teach them many things.” (‭‭Mark‬ ‭6:34‬) When you see a crowd how do you feel? Some of us find large numbers of people overwhelming. some feel afraid when they are surrounded by  them. Others are just exhausted by crowds. When we are traveling on a busy train we certainly dont want to talk to anyone. We see the crowd as a unit. Almost as though it is is one … [Read more...]

When even Jesus ‘could not’ What can stop the Almighty?

And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. And he marveled because of their unbelief.‭‭(Mark‬ ‭6:5-6‬) This is one of the most remarkable verses in the Bible. Jesus, the all powerful, stopped in his tracks. What could prevent him from acting? What could hinder his power? Unbelief. The Western Church almost encourages unbelief. Our cynicism and skepticism means that if God actually turned up and did something we would be shocked … [Read more...]

Do not fear, only believe!

“But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” Mark‬ ‭5:36‬ Even the most outwardly confident of us sometimes need to hear this command of Jesus. He tells us the same as he told the ruler of the synagogue: do not to be anxious, but instead trust him. Trust is a choice which can dispel fear.This is not an instruction for us to simply by human effort force ourselves not to fear, or to deny the reality and cover up our anxiety. Like … [Read more...]

Evangelism made simple 

“And he ... said to him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.””‭‭(Mark‬ ‭5:19‬) Oh how complicated we make evangelism sometimes. Or how put off we are of it because we know we will not be the next Billy Graham! Here Jesus gives a simple command. The challenge to you and me is how much do we actually do this. We live in a world that is largely disinterested in Jesus. But, when the time is right, simply telling our stor … [Read more...]

The One who spoke peace to the storm now speaks peace to you. (Mark 4:39)

“And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.”‭‭ (Mark‬ ‭4:39).‬ READ more at Bible Gateway. There are different kinds of sleep. Jesus' sleep was birthed in total confidence his Father was watching over the universe as he slumbered. Sleeping in the back of a boat as it is nearly overwhelmed by wind and waves is remarkable. No wonder there was a note of irritation in the disciples voices as they woke him saying "don't … [Read more...]

A family divided against itself will fall 

"... if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand.” (‭‭Mark‬ ‭3:25)‬ ‭ READ more at Bible Gateway. ‬‬I was reading Mark 3 this morning. The theologian in me immediately started thinking about blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Maybe one day I will add my thoughts to the myriad of others. But instead another verse hit me in the eye today.To understand what Jesus means here, we must leave aside any notion of the windows of a house taking up arms against the bric … [Read more...]

Jesus’ anger at hardness of heart (Mark 3:5)

 And he looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. (Mark 3:5 ESV) READ more  at Bible Gateway.  Hardness of heart means simply failure to soften your heart. It means failure of empathy. A rejection of someone else as a person. It means we see them as an annoyance, or it means certain rules and regulations take precedence over their needs in an unhelpful wa … [Read more...]

Jesus is not looking for perfect people, just failures like you and me (Mark 2:17)

“And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.””‭‭ Mark‬ ‭2:17‬ ‭‬‬ Read more at Bible Gateway. This is personally so encouraging to me. I know how it goes. We like to put certain Christians on a pedestal. Some of them enjoy being perceived as perfect. But Jesus has no time for those who think they have it all together. In fact he remembers only too well his encounters wi … [Read more...]


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